The Android Stock browser will continue to use WebKit

Google Chrome logoWith Google launching Blink and essentially abandoning WebKit, some questions have arisen about what this means for the stock Android browser and Android as a whole.

The Blink engine is already built into Chrome and will be in Chrome on every platform it ships, that is, Windows, Mac, Linux, Chrome OS and Android as well. It won't be on iOS since that's an iOS specific browser with the Chrome name.

So Blink will arrive on Android soon enough, in a matter of weeks if things go smooth, once Chrome 28 graduates to the stable channel, though obviously only for people running Chrome on Android.

As for the stock Android browser, Google isn't saying much, but the fact is, that's a different team, a different project and a different browser. Blink is for Chrome and that's what Google is focusing on.

Google doesn't have anything against shipping Blink as part of the stock Android browser, the problem is technical.

Blink can't be ported on its own, it relies heavily on V8, the JavaScript engine used by Chrome, and Skia, the graphics engine used by Chrome.

Any project that wants to incorporate Blink has to use these components along with the Chromium content layer, the portion of the code that implements most of the platform-specific features.

So there's no way to just simply pluck Blink and stick it into a browser, you have to take a significant portion of Chrome as well. Google probably doesn't see the need to do this.

That doesn't bode well for the stock Android browser which hasn't been getting much attention anyway. Going forward, Google will push Chrome as the default browser for Android but, crucially, won't make it available as part of the Android Open Source Project.

So any manufacturer will have to license all Google apps to get Chrome on their devices. Those forking Android will have to rely on the underdeveloped stock browser.

The Android browser will likely receive more improvements and will likely continue to rely on WebKit for the foreseeable future.

That said, there's nothing stopping Google from bundling Chromium as the stock browser in the open source Android though that too is probably more trouble than it's worth.

Source: Softpedia

Tags: Android, browsers, Chrome, WebKit

Add comment

Your name:
Sign in with:
Your comment:

Enter code:

E-mail (not required)
E-mail will not be disclosed to the third party

Last news

Galaxy Note10 really is built around a 6.7-inch display
You may still be able to download your content
Facebook, Messenger and Instagram are all going away
Minimize apps to a floating, always-on-top bubble
Japan Display has been providing LCDs for the iPhone XR, the only LCD model in Apple’s 2018 line-up
The 2001 operating system has reached its lowest share level
The entire TSMC 5nm design infrastructure is available now from TSMC
The smartphone uses a Snapdragon 660 processor running Android 9 Pie
The Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017) Review
The evolution of the successful smartphone, now with a waterproof body and USB Type-C
February 7, 2017 / 2
Samsung Galaxy TabPro S - a tablet with the Windows-keyboard
The first Windows-tablet with the 12-inch display Super AMOLED
June 7, 2016 /
Keyboards for iOS
Ten iOS keyboards review
July 18, 2015 /
Samsung E1200 Mobile Phone Review
A cheap phone with a good screen
March 8, 2015 / 4
Creative Sound Blaster Z sound card review
Good sound for those who are not satisfied with the onboard solution
September 25, 2014 / 2
Samsung Galaxy Gear: Smartwatch at High Price
The first smartwatch from Samsung - almost a smartphone with a small body
December 19, 2013 /

News Archive



Do you use microSD card with your phone?
or leave your own version in comments (16)